GRIT Artisan Tea is proud to partner with the Kanchanjangha Tea Estate (KTE) located in the mountainous region of the Panchthar District of Eastern Nepal. KTE is out first of what we hope to be many single-origin tea collections. They utilize a cooperative model wherein each of the over 100 farmers actively participate in the decision-making process and share in the profits. The estate was founded in 1984 by Deepak Baskota and pioneered organic farming practices in Nepal. GRIT Artisan Tea is proud to support several programs developed by KTE that help enrich and enhance the lives of the community.
The Cow-Bank Project
The Cow-Bank Project was initially started by distributing 36 high-yielding cows and bull to the farmers of the village, while phase two increased that by an additional 66 cows. Farmers are able to sell their cow's milk at the local market in order to supplement their income. They are also able to breed their cattle, but are expected to return their first calf so that it can be given to another farmer in need. Further, farmers can sell their cow's manure to KTE, who utilize it as an organic fertilizer.
The Scholarship Project
Nepal has an estimated literacy rate of roughly 39%, with a great disparity between males and females. In 2002, Kanchanjangha Tea Estate initiated a scholarship program that allows all the children from small farms in the Panchthar District to study in the local English boarding school and community school. GRIT Artisan Tea is honored to help maintain this program through the sales of KTE's exquisite teas.
Thrift Store Project
Kanchanjangha Tea Estate started one of Nepal's first thrift store within their factory. This program allows KTE to bring in warm clothing from the U.S. and Nepla's capital, Kathmandu, in order to distribute warm clothing to farmers and their families during the winter season.